There are numerous reasons why individuals struggle with being assertive. It likely started during childhood. They may have grown up in a household where “children are to be seen and not heard”, where parents may have become angry if children spoke up, or where parents did not demonstrate assertiveness themselves. Ultimately, it’s anxiety and fear of negative consequences that keep people from being assertive. Unfortunately, not being assertive can be hard on relationships. If you can’t express your feelings or opinions, you will never feel understood. Furthermore, not saying how you really feel and keeping your feelings bottled up can erode your self-worth and self-esteem. Sometimes, this can lead to feelings of resentment or even aggression.
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